Tried a “detox” program? Juice diet? Cleanses? I encourage everyone to take a hard look at quick-fix detox programs. Instead consider an evidenced-based approach to detoxification. Exposure to potentially toxic metals and chemicals is becoming a mainstay of modern life. Those with impaired detoxification due to chronic illness or infection are particularly prone to exposure. In these individuals, the liver may not be able to fully detoxify metals and toxins resulting in chronic toxic burden and tissue deposition.
Sources of Toxic Exposure:
- Dental Amalgams
- Consumption of Predatory Fish
- Direct Exposure to Industry (Coal Burning)
- Insecticides, Fungicides, Fertilizers from Food Stuffs
- Cigarette Smoke
- Household Products
Chlorella is a green algae with the ability to bind several toxic agents in the body. Specifically, it has been heavily researched for its ability to bind toxic metals like mercury, lead, and cadmium. Additional evidence is available that suggests Chlorella is able to bind xenobiotics found in the environment such as dioxins. These are byproducts of industrial processes including polychlorinated phenols. Dioxins were recently found in high concentrations in human breast milk in some populations. After supplementation with chlorella, dioxin concentrations were reduced substantially (1).
In a double-blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled trial (n=60), chlorella or a placebo was given for a period of 8 weeks. Natural Killer cell activity increased after the trial in the treatment group and changes in cytokines were also noted; namely IFN-y (2). The immunomodulatory effects of chlorella found in this study corroborate with similar findings in murine models. Still others have shown that supplementation can increase IgA levels—an important immunoglobulin found in body secretions (1).
A review of double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trials using chlorella showed supplementation may reduce high blood pressure, lower serum cholesterol levels, accelerate wound healing, and enhance immune functions. Of particular interest in this analysis was that chlorella supplementation in fibromyalgia patients resulted in improved pain and function (3).
Typical chlorella supplements contain indigestible forms which are not bioavailable when taken orally. When choosing a chlorella supplement, opt for one that contains broken cell wall chlorella which is readily bioavailable.
Metal-X-Synergy from Designs for Health contains a wide array of ingredients which assist in detoxification. These include modified citrus pectin, modified alginate complex, NAC (4), cilantro, garlic, alpha-lipoic acid, glutathione, and organic, broken cell wall chlorella. These all work together to decrease the total heavy metal burden--pulling them out of tissues effectively. This supplement is frequently used by healthcare practitioners as a provocative agent prior to heavy metal testing. It provides a natural way to chelate without many of the common side effects of synthetic agents such as DMSA or EDTA.
You can find Metal-X Synergy in the dispensary >>
* Did you know Dr. Craig donates a portion of all supplement sales to CFS & Fibromyalgia research & advocacy groups?
1 Nakano S, Takekoshi H, Nakano M. (2007) Chlorella (Chlorella pyrenoidosa) supplementation decreases dioxin and increases immunoglobulin a concentrations in breast milk. J Med Food. 10(1):134-42. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17472477
2 Kwak, JH, et al. (2012) Beneficial immunostimulatory effect of short-term Chlorella supplementation: enhancement of Natural Killer cell activity and early inflammatory response (Randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial) Nutr J. 11: 53. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17472477
3 Merchant RE, Andre CA. (2001) A review of recent clinical trials of the nutritional supplement Chlorella pyrenoidosa in the treatment of fibromyalgia, hypertension, and ulcerative colitis. Altern Ther Health Med. 7(3):79-91. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11347287
4 Ballatori N, Lieberman MW, Wang W. (1998) N-acetylcysteine as an antidote in methylmercury poisoning.Environ Health Perspect. 106(5):267-71. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9520359